Northeastern Illinois University to offer tuition, fee waivers for Afghan refugees

Northeastern Illinois University will cover the cost of tuition and fees for 12 credit hours for qualified refugees who settle in Chicago or nearby areas, the university announced Wednesday.

The university said the initiative will be available on a first-come, first-served basis for up to 15 continuing and prospective students for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Refugees will be able to attend the university, including its English as a Second Language program, through university-sponsored discretionary waivers.

The Chicago area expects to welcome about 500 Afghan refugees in the coming months. 

"When we heard that young Afghans were being resettled in Illinois, Northeastern was willing to do our part in helping with the resettlement effort by providing them an opportunity for education," Ann P. Kalayil, a member of Northeastern’s Board of Trustees, said. "Northeastern Illinois University is committed to providing learning opportunities for all and especially for people who have come from difficult circumstances and need a jump-start." 


"Northeastern Illinois University is proud of its legacy as a lighthouse of hope and possibility for those historically excluded from the pursuit of higher education. This legacy calls us to declare solidarity with all refugees displaced from their homes," Northeastern Illinois University President Gloria J. Gibson said. "Given that it was a Black Haitian, Jean Baptiste Point DuSable, who founded the city of Chicago, it is especially important to make explicit our sense of shared responsibility to create pathways of possibility for all refugees from Afghanistan to Haiti and beyond, and we welcome them to NEIU."

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